When Does Having Obama As President Start To Pay Some Foreign Policy Dividends?
One of the things the Left repeated over and over during Bush’s time in office was that he was a belligerent cowboy who “squandered” all the goodwill that America had after 9/11.
Of course, that was always a lot of hooey. It’s one thing to say something like, “We’re all Americans now,” and it’s another to get pacifistic, infantile, anti-American populaces to actually support doing things that they’re used to having done for them: like, you know, defending Western civilization.
But in any case, Obama was going to change all that. Western Europe loves him — plus, he was going to be humble. He was going to reach out to Muslims. Why, he would get the sort of cooperation from the world that George Bush never could.
So, how’s that going a month into Obama’s tenure as President? Well, he has certainly kept up his end of the bargain. He did his first formal interview with Al-Arabiya TV. He has already announced that he’s closing Gitmo, although he doesn’t seem to have figured out how to make that work yet. We’re going to the virulently anti-Semitic Durban II conference. We’ve certainly been extremely humble.
Now, what have the results of those efforts been? Let’s see.
Pakistan has now essentially turned over a large swath of their country to the Taliban. At the urging of Russia, Kyrgyzstan is closing a strategically important base to us. Iran has essentially told us that we’ll have to kiss their behinds to get THEM to TALK TO US. Oh, and our NATO allies are spurning our plea for more troops in Afghanistan.
In other words, the result of all this mamby-pamby “we just want you to like us” pap has been that our foreign policy situation is rapidly deteriorating, not improving.
That’s not a surprise.
Here’s the reality: the exceptional cooperation we had between the US and Europe in the past was a result of our being in league against the Soviet Union. They had little choice other than to side with us because the big bad Soviet wolf was knocking on their door and we were the ultimate guarantor of their freedom.
Once that threat ended, Western Europe no longer had a reason to stand strong with us and the first time there was a major test of our alliance, the war on terrorism, they failed it. People being what they are, lesser nations are going be jealous of us, they’re going to resent what we have and what we can do, and they’re going to do what they can to knock us down a peg or two.
That’s just the history of humankind and Obama is not going to change that. To the contrary, his weakness and naivete is going to inspire far more problems for us around the world than George Bush ever did. That’s certainly how his term as President is starting off, it’s historically how it works, and it will likely be the case all during his administration.
Also, it makes perfect sense if you put it in personal terms. It’s a lot less risky to start trouble with a touchy-feely weakling who’s constantly apologizing for things that aren’t his fault than to get into it with a hard-nosed “cowboy” who’s made it clear he isn’t going to put up with any crap. Having Obama as President is an open invitation for our “friends” to take advantage of us and for our enemies to start trouble — and you can bet that many of them are going to take us up on that invitation.